Where have all the manners gone?

 
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I held the door for an asshole the other day. 

I opened the door; she walked right in; she didn't say a thing. 

Yes, people like this actually exist.

I was raised to hold the door open for people. When I was a kid, my mom said "if you ever want a girlfriend, learn your manners." Apparently she thought that would be my only attractive quality. 

He's chubby. And he's a dunce. But you should SEE the way he chews with his mouth closed.

Side note: She clearly didn't know how to motivate me. At the time I was far more interested in my Transformers toys than girls. [If you said "robots in disguise" after reading "Transformers" we probably would have been friends.]

I assumed that everyone's mother was like this.

I was wrong. 

Maybe it's geography?

I live in New York, which gets a bad rap for being filled with short-tempered jerks. Based on my experience, that's completely true. But, while they are short tempered and don't suffer fools [tourists] gladly, they're the friendliest people I've ever met.

Yes, there are a lot of assholes here. But [anecdotally, and in no way verifiable] I think no more or less than anywhere else, adjusting for population density. In other words, I think the percentage of people who are assholes is constant everywhere.

Maybe it's my building?

Many of the people living in my building are students from countries where they hire workers to cram people onto trains. The cities where these people are from are far denser than New York. Maybe they don't even notice me? Maybe I'm just background noise to them? [Or maybe they think I'm a humanoid robot?] Possibly, but many of these students still say thank you, so the Asshole Quotient is constant here as well.

Maybe it's technology?

Maybe in some strange way, writing off people in the digital realm makes it easier to ignore them in the real one?
— Anthony LeDonne

We live in an age where we require little interpersonal interaction [thank heavens!]. One can, hypothetically speaking, never leave his apartment except to take his dog for a walk or do stand-up. It's entirely possible to avoid face-to-face interaction all day.

I wonder if we've become desensitized to others around us. How could someone say thank you if he doesn't even register me holding the door for him?

Overall, technological isolation isn't a bad thing. I love avoiding inane conversations about [anything] the weather or sports in a checkout line [anywhere].

But perhaps people are in a digital mode so often that they're unable to adjust to real life? It's easy to ignore the online persona who left a mean Yelp review. And it's even easier not to respond to someone's nice, informative tweet, to say thank you for writing something. [Like a joke.]

Maybe in some strange way, writing off people in the digital realm makes it easier to ignore them in the real one?

 

I hold doors open for people because I'm aware of them. I see them. I hear them. I know what it's like to be them, walking behind a [terribly handsome] guy like me.

And that's why I've decided to make them notice me.

To each person who thanks me for holding the door, I say "you're welcome."

And if they don't thank me, I say it even louder.

You may not register that I've done something nice for you, but you'll definitely register my passive aggressive comment.

And no one's going to defend being a dick.

 

What do you think, People Of The Digital World?

Do you hold doors for people?
Do you thank people who hold them for you?
Do I have any attractive qualities besides my manners? Kidding.
[Not kidding.]
Write your answer in the comments below!

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Anthony LeDonneComment